Golf Preview: Hungry Lakers ready to climb back on top
The hunger is thick on the Detroit Lakes boys’ golf team, as they prepare for the 2014 season with four returning off the 2013 Class 2A state runner-up team.
First, the Lakers will have to feast on another competitive regular season schedule, before hopefully making another trip back to Jordan, where the Class 2A state meet will be held.
“We return four hungry kids, they were disappointed in the outcome of last year’s state meet,” said DL head coach Bob Gorden. “But you can’t take anything away from Staples-Motley, they are a very good team, but I thought we had one of our better teams last year.”
With Mid-State Confer-ence rival Staples-Motley putting the end to DL’s two-year state championship reign last year, it’s time to start at the bottom of the hill and try to climb back up to the top.
“We don’t even talk about state, because you have to win your section first,” Gorden said.
The Lakers do lose some top-heavy talent in Austin Rusness and Karter Smith, who each were mainstays in the DL lineup the last five years.
But senior Michael Herzog is returning for his fifth season.
“Michael is a very import cog, he’s a talented individual and will be a leader on the team,” Gorden said.
The Lakers also have juniors Ben Mallow, Christian Hedstrom and Tanner Schnathorst returning off of last year’s state team.
“All four of those guys can go low in any meet,” Gorden said.
“We also have good competition in our final two spots, so I really like our depth.”
Other varsity letterwinners who are back and will be competing for a spot include juniors Dahlen Olson, Austin Dodd and Luke Payne, and freshman Isaac Cihak.
“No one is guaranteed a spot, even our top four,” Gorden said.
“We have many golfers who can compete for a varsity spot and if not there, on our junior varsity, which has a competitive schedule, as well.”
The Lakers’ schedule will be “as good as it ever has been,” with Class 3A champion Eden Prairie on it, along with other top teams in the state.
Vern Schnathorst also returns for another season as assistant coach.
The Lakers open the season April 7, in Becker, with the DL Earlybird Invite set for April 14, at the Lakeview Golf Course.
The 2014 Detroit Lakes boys’ golf schedule:
7 at Becker
14 DL Invite at Lakeview
16-17 at Pequot Lakes
19 at Perham
25-26 at Grand Rapids
28 at South St. Paul
2-3 Northwest Classic at DCC
5 at Bemidji
7 Pre-Section in Walker
9-10 at Jordan
9-10 at Fargo North
12 Midstate Conference at Wadena
15 at St. Cloud
16-17 at Walker and Park Rapids
20 DL Invite at DCC
28 Sub-Section at Park Rapids
2 Section at Walker